FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Charlie Davies knows a little something about dealing with adversity. But over time, he's trying to learn how to cope with each bout a little better than the one before.
Nearly five years after surviving an auto accident that claimed the life of a fellow passenger, the challenge in front of the Revolution forward isn't nearly as serious -- or steep.
Sidelined since April with a calf injury that cut short his blossoming form off the bench, the 27-year-old striker admitted that the biggest hurdle ahead of him is the one he's set in front of himself.
"I'd say it's all mental for me," Davies said, "just because I feel like ever since my accident, there's just a long way for me to go, to get back to where I was and to keep going. So I always feel like there's a long road in front of me as far as how much I can still push myself."
Motivation has never been an issue for Davies. His determination to return to the level of play that earned him regular call-ups with the U.S. Men's National Team ahead of the 2010 World Cup has been well-documented.
In the same vein, the Manchester, N.H., native will be the first to admit that his relentless work ethic has, at times, undermined him. Injuries have dogged Davies since joining the Revolution last summer, depriving him of the opportunity to showcase his talents in front of the Foxboro Faithful.
"Yeah, it's been frustrating," Davies said. "Sometimes the problem with me is that I push myself too much, because I wasn't getting so many minutes on the field. So I feel like I need to push myself (because) I'm not playing so much that I get these little injuries."
But Davies appears to be turning a corner on his recovery from a calf knock. He returned to full training last Saturday, and is keen on returning to the lineup in the near future.
"Definitely the Open Cup game," Davies said of Wednesday's fourth-round match against the Richmond Kickers. "I want to take part in that, and then hopefully for that first game back after the break against Philly just to be back in the (game-day) 18."
Barring any hiccups in his recovery, Davies will have nearly a week and a half of full training behind him once Wednesday's game rolls around. That may not sound like an extensive amount of time, but to Davies, it represents a significant step forward in returning to the form that made him a dangerous weapon off the bench earlier this season.
While there are no guarantees that the Revolution forward will see the field at Richmond City Stadium next week, comments from coach Jay Heaps earlier this week suggest that a chance is certainly there for the taking.
"I look at it as an opportunity for players," Heaps said. "I think that we have players that are ready to play, and we have a couple of players that are definitely nicked up a little bit, but we'll be smart with them, but other players that are ready to go."
Davies' confidence in his abilities has never wavered -- that much is certain. What remains a mystery, though, is whether he can stay healthy long enough to make a significant impact with the Revolution this season.
Though he acknowledges that his insatiable drive for success has been his own worst enemy, Davies said that he'll be smarter about returning to the field this time around.
"I feel like I'm still getting better up to this point, so (the plan is) just to keep going," Davies said. "Now, I've kind of got a plan going and set from here to kind of get back on the field and stay healthy."